The war between Mitsubishi and Subaru has been raging for years. Even gearheads who weren’t born when Japan invaded the United States and upended the auto industry are still wondering which is better: the Lancer Evo or the Subaru WRX?
No matter what era you were born in and how you watched these two Japanese behemoths go head-to-head, this piece has something for everyone. This is mainly because starting and trying to end a Subaru vs. Mitsubishi dispute will be completely fruitless, even if we tried. However, we can look to one side and marvel at the sports cars who made this company great. And for this piece, we’ll shine the light on Mitsubishi.
Don’t get me wrong, Subaru has always put out great machines on the market. But when it comes to these 10 Mitsubishis, Subaru’s opponent just had the upper hand.
ten 1995 Eclipse
Paul Walker, played by Brian O’Conner, was introduced in The fast and the furious not only as an unforgettable character, but also as the driver of an unforgettable car. Beneath him was a green 1995 Mitsubishi Eclipse RS. And that brand looked and ran more enticing than the dreadful Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross we have today.
What made the original and forgotten Eclipse and its GTX Turbo Edition special was the number of aftermarket mods you could add to them. It was also a great entry-level sports car before delving into the wild world of mid-level sports coupes.
9 3000GT VR-4
This brand was referred to by many experts as the dark horse of Mitsubishi when it was released. This was the company’s last creation in 1990. And as people gathered more details about it, they became more amused at what this car was created for.
The 3000GT VR-4 was less of a sports car and more of a grand tourer. But then Mitsubishi packed it with features only found in supercars at the time. The 3000GT VR-4 had permanent four-wheel drive, active aerodynamics, four-wheel steering, and electronically controlled suspension.
8 Colt GTi-16 Turbo
Hot hatches are one of the funniest creations ever made in the automotive industry. The Colt GTi-16 Turbo was Europe’s favorite. Unfortunately, despite the rise in popularity, this brand could not topple the cult following hot hatches such as the Golf GTi, Peugeot 205 GTi and Renault 5 Turbo.
Under the hood, the GTi-16 Turbo donned a 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol engine developing 128 hp. This made the brand’s performance very accessible, resulting in a car that was very easy to drive. And despite its sports car characteristics, the Colt GTi-16 Turbo has helped make Mitsubishi a family carmaker, given its everyday driving quality.
Back in the 1990s, having a full-size premium sedan parked in your garage was one of the coolest things around. The Diamante was designed to capture the attention of this emerging market while directly targeting the major German automakers.
This is how the Diamante ended up looking like a BMW 5 Series, especially in black. However, despite never having as much punch as the Series 5, this brand was still very comfortable. And that’s where he won the battle. The Diamante used futuristic technologies such as an active suspension, electric sunroof and CD player to give itself an edge over the German competition.
6 Gallant VR-4
The Galant was a feared machine in the rally world. This brand has won 6 WRC rally stages. He has dominated so many stages, including the 1000 lakes of Finland. So the road version of this brand was impressive. But it was the high-end VR4 Galant that left a lasting impression.
The engine development done in this car was amazing. The first generation Galant had an inline-four that developed 237 hp. But for the next two generations, Mitsubishi swapped the four-cylinder for a V6. The first was a 2.0-liter 24-valve V6 that developed the same power as the inline-four. This power unit was later upgraded to a 2.5-liter V6 developing 279 hp.
5 Launch 1600 GSR
It is the first Mitsubishi car to become a rallying legend. In the 70s, this brand dominated many rally stages, especially the most difficult ones. She won two rally stages in Africa, one in 1972 and the other in 1974. Due to this party, she earned the nickname “King of Cars”.
Due to the ruggedness of the Lancer 1600 GSR, it was used in private racing long after Mitsubishi stopped production. The road version was a respectable performer, with the engine developing 108 bhp. The rally version, however, was tuned to produce 169 hp.
4 Launch Evo VII
It was the first Lancer Evo to benefit from a complete concept redesign we had seen from the rally-era Mitsubishi Lancers. The new external design of the 2001 Lancer Evo 7 generated positive reviews from critics and fans. Mitsubishi had also reworked the interior, offering a new level of comfort and smoothness with the Evo 7.
This brand donned all-leather Recaro seats, which was rare at the time. The suspension settings have also been changed. The engine was also slightly boosted by the engineers.
3 Launch Evo 8
The previous generation Lancer Evo 7 was a masterpiece. But the new generation of Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8 was a bigger leap for the company. This brand has perfectly combined the new design philosophy introduced in the Evo 7 with the power and comfort that we had become accustomed to not only in the Evo 7 but also in modern cars of the time.
With the Evo 8, Mitsubishi sold more cars than it ever had. As a result, the new Lancers have become more luxurious, more user-friendly, but still rallying from their roots.
2 Lancer Evo VI – Tommi Mäkinen Edition
The Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI was a wonderful ride. However, the brand that garnered the most glory was the Evo VI Tommi Makinen Edition. To date, it is one of the most memorable limited edition Mitsubishi Evo models ever built.
Only 2500 Tommi Makinen Edition Lancer Evo VI were made. Tommi Makinen was a big name in the world of rallying and a special name in Mitsubishi quarters. He was a rallying legend who had won four WRC championships in a Mitsubishi. For this special edition Evo VI, Mitsubishi fitted special front bumpers, TME edition decals, a faster spooled titanium turbine and a lowered ride height for tarmac rally stages.
1 Launch Evo X
The Lancer has come a long way and the Evo X has been the culmination and end of this incredible ride. Together, the Lancer provided one of the most iconic sports car series of all time. And as seen with the 10th and latest generation, this brand has continued to evolve.
The Evo X was an AWD powerhouse. Its engine developed between 276 hp and 440 hp, depending on the trim level. And in stepping down, this marque has left even die-hard Subaru fans sad, marking the end of one of the most heated rivalries in automotive history.
Subaru is one of the most revered Japanese automakers among Western car enthusiasts today. But, the company had as many failures as successes.
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